(Zech·a·riʹah) [Jehovah has remembered].
3. A Levitical gatekeeper also commended as “a counselor with discretion.” He had been a gatekeeper at the entrance of the tent of meeting, and when David reorganized the Levitical services for the future temple, Zechariah’s lot fell to the north. He was the firstborn son of Meshelemiah, a Korahite, in the Kohathite family of Levites.—1 Chron. 9:21, 22; 26:1, 2, 14.
4. A Levite assigned to play a stringed instrument with other Levites in the procession that brought the ark of the covenant to Jerusalem. Zechariah thereafter played in front of the tent that housed the Ark.—1 Chron. 15:18, 20; 16:1, 4, 5.
5. A priestly trumpeter in the procession accompanying the ark of the covenant to Jerusalem.—1 Chron. 15:24.
6. A Levite of the family of Uzziel who was involved in the reorganization of service for the house of Jehovah.—1 Chron. 24:24, 25.
11. Son of King Jehoshaphat. Zechariah and his brothers had all received generous gifts from Jehoshaphat, but the kingship passed to the firstborn Jehoram; in order to make his position strong, Jehoram, after his enthronement, killed Zechariah and his brothers and other princes.—2 Chron. 21:1-4.
12. Son of High Priest Jehoiada. After Jehoiada’s death, King Jehoash turned away from true worship, listening to wrong counsel rather than to Jehovah’s prophets. Zechariah, Jehoash’s cousin (2 Chron. 22:11), sternly warned the people about this, but, instead of repenting, they stoned him in the temple courtyard. Zechariah’s dying words were: “Let Jehovah see to it and ask it back.” This prophetic request was granted, for not only did Syria do great damage to Judah, but also Jehoash was killed by two of his servants “because of the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest.” The Septuagint and Vulgate say that Jehoash was killed to avenge the blood of the “son” of Jehoiada. The Masoretic and Syriac Peshitta, however, read “sons” possibly using the plural number to denote the excellence and worth of Jehoiada’s son Zechariah the prophet-priest.—2 Chron. 24:17-22, 25.
Zechariah the son of Jehoiada is most likely the one whom Jesus had in mind when prophesying that “the blood of all the prophets spilled from the founding of the world” will be required “from this generation [the Jews of the time of Jesus’ earthly ministry], from the blood of Abel down to the blood of Zechariah, who was slain between the altar and the house.” (Luke 11:50, 51) The places mentioned as the site of the slaying correspond. In the first century C.E., Chronicles was the last book in the canon of the Hebrew Scriptures. So Jesus’ words, “from Abel . . . to Zechariah,” was similar to our expression, “from Genesis to Revelation.” In the parallel account at Matthew 23:35, Zechariah is called the son of Barachiah, possibly another name for Jehoiada, unless, by chance, it indicates a generation between Jehoiada and Zechariah, or is the name of an earlier ancestor.—See BARACHIAH.
13. An adviser of King Uzziah, who reigned from 829 to 777 B.C.E. Zechariah is described as an “instructor in the fear of the true God.”—2 Chron. 26:5.
14. King of Israel. Zechariah was a son of Jeroboam II and the last of Jehu’s dynasty to rule. His recorded reign of six months was terminated when he was murdered by Shallum. (2 Ki. 15:8-12) Zechariah’s father died in 803 B.C.E., in the 27th year of Uzziah’s reign (2 Ki. 14:29), but some eleven years passed before his stated rule of six months’ duration occurred in Uzziah’s 38th and 39th years (792/791 B.C.E.). (2 Ki. 15:8, 13) This may have been due to his being very young when his father died, or it may have been due to considerable opposition (typical of the northern kingdom of Israel) that had to be overcome before he was firmly established in the kingdom.
15. A witness to Isaiah’s writing the name of his son on a tablet; son of Jeberechiah.—Isa. 8:1, 2.
20. A postexilic prophet and writer of the book bearing his name. Zechariah calls himself “the son of Berechiah the son of Iddo” (Zech. 1:1, 7) but in other references made to him, this middle linkage is omitted. (Ezra 5:1; 6:14; Neh. 12:4, 16) Zechariah was probably born somewhere in Babylon, for his prophetic activity began only sixteen years after the return from exile and reasonably he was at that time older than sixteen, though still called a “young man.”—Zech. 2:4.
Zechariah and Haggai were used by Jehovah to stimulate Zerubbabel, High Priest Jeshua and the returned exiles to finish rebuilding Jehovah’s temple even though a Persian government ban was still in effect. (Ezra 5:1, 2; 6:14, 15) Zechariah’s prophecy contains messages that he delivered to that end over a period of two years and a month. (Zech. 1:1, 7; 7:1, 8) Any other prophetic activity he performed is not recorded.—See ZECHARIAH, BOOK OF.
Though this Zechariah’s father’s name was Berechiah, Jesus’ reference to “Zechariah the son of Barachiah” (Matt. 23:35; note the difference in spelling) more likely refers to a high priest who lived at an earlier time.—See No. 12 above.
21. One of the “head ones” whom Ezra sent to gather some ministers for the house of God at the time of the journey to Jerusalem in 468 B.C.E. (Ezra 8:15-17) He is possibly the same as No. 22 or 23 below.
26, 27. Two men of Judah, the son of Amariah and of the Shelanite respectively, whose descendants lived in Jerusalem after the Babylonian exile.—Neh. 11:4, 5.
30. Another trumpeter, also a priest, at the same inauguration attended by No. 29 above.—Neh. 12:40, 41.
31. Priestly father of John the Baptist. (Luke 3:2) He and his wife Elizabeth, a relative of Jesus’ mother Mary, lived in the Judean hills. They both feared God and obeyed his commandments. Though advanced in years, they had no children.—Luke 1:5-7, 36.
When it was Zechariah’s turn to offer incense during “the division of Abijah,” probably around late spring or early summer of 3 B.C.E., he entered the sanctuary as usual. On this occasion Jehovah’s angel Gabriel appeared to him, informing him that his prayers for a son were to be answered. Gabriel also said that the boy was to be called John, and he instructed as to how he should be raised and what this son was to accomplish. (Luke 1:5-17) Zechariah asked the angel for a sign as a further assurance. Because of his weakness as to believing the angel, he was informed that he would be struck with dumbness until after John’s birth. (Luke 1:18-23) On the eighth day after the baby was born, Elizabeth rejected suggestions from neighbors and relatives and insisted that her son be named John. Upon their appealing to the father, Zechariah took a tablet and wrote on it: “John is its name.” Instantly his speech was restored and he uttered a prophecy concerning the work of his son and that of the Messiah.—Luke 1:13, 57-79.